View Full Version : 9/11/01

09-11-2011, 01:51 AM
Around 8:30am I was doing some network maintenance. A few minutes later one of my students came in and said a plane crashed into the World Trade Center down in NYC.

I immediately thought of the B-25 which hit the Empire State Building back in 1945 in heavy weather. But NYC was just 100 miles away from me, and the weather was bright and clear all over Connecticut, Long Island, and New Jersey.

Then I began watching the horror continue to unfold - first on my computer screen, then on the dean's office TV when we all began to move together, unsure of what was happening.

The world changed.


09-11-2011, 06:02 AM
I was going flying.

It was a beautiful, "CAVU" day, perfect for flying an old Aeronca. I had the Miata parked, with the radio on, next to the plane as I made all my usual checks before flight. As usual, I was listening to the BBC.

Suddenly, the announcer had an agitated voice; unusual for the BBC. "A plane has struck one of the Twin Towers."

Our airport is about 60 miles from The Towers and they are in easy view once you climb above 500 feet AGL. I always used them as a "east compass" from my area.

I re-tied the plane and quickly drove the 5 minute ride home. I kept thinking (or maybe hoping) that this was some sort of tragic accident.
But the top was down so I could see that clear, blue sky; I kept asking myself, "How?".

When I arrived at home, I saw John, my elderly Norwegian neighbour, puttering in his garden. John escaped from the Nazis and was a volunteer on US Merchant Marine ships in WW II. When I told him the news, he was shocked. Then he pointed to the sky and said; "Terrorism! Look at this weather! This is <span style="text-decoration: underline">not</span> an accident!".

He was right, of course.

09-11-2011, 06:39 AM
I was at a conference for very senior airport people (not me) in Montreal. We had completed "Breakfast with the Exhibitors" (me) and I had gone back to my hotel room to get something. I flipped on the TV to see what the latest news was just in time to watch the second aircraft go into the other tower. I call my colleague who was on the exhibit floor and tell him. He relays this to the people around him and draws quite a crowd who want to know more. By the time I get back down to the exhibit hall, they have turned most of the display screens to CNN to catch the live reporting. It was ironic that as they are shutting down the airspace most of the senior US airport people (VPs, Airport Managers etc.) are trapped outside the country with no way of getting back to major situations at each of their airports.

Long story short, stuck in Montreal for a few extra days, train ride to Toronto (1st in over 25 years), cadged a car ride over the border once it re-opened, rented a car at Buffalo and drove back to Philly airport to get my car. Arrived in Philly in time to see rental cars from all over the US doing the same thing as me.

09-11-2011, 08:45 AM
One of the customers I called on happened to be in the WTC so I was frequently in the building. That day I was in my office as luck would have it. I still have my customers business card with the WTC address.
It's funny how time stood still that day for all of us.

09-11-2011, 09:04 AM
It is still a fog to me where I was back then. But, strangely, I remember exactly where I was and what I was doing when Kennedy was shot. Both life changing events.

09-11-2011, 09:41 AM
I had worked the night shift, and didn't know what had happened till about 3 or 4 in the afternoon, after everything had already transpired. I feel like I just read the whole thing out of a book, or watched a program on history. Somehow I've always felt disconnected with the whole thing.
A good friend of mine, a pastor and military Chaplin, was called down there, and spent several weeks on duty at Ground Zero. He tells some heart-wrenching stories.
Today, watching some of the names getting read, and 11/12 year olds reading a batch of names, and they often get to one name and say "And my father, ------ ----" That hit a cord.

09-11-2011, 10:01 AM
I was at work in a machine shop in Barrie (just north of Toronto), as we worked some rumours filtered onto the shop floor about what had happened, at breaks I would catch up on the latest before heading back to work, half stunned...

When I got home I was glued to the TV all night, absorbing it all in as I had missed all the events when they happened live earlier in the day...

09-11-2011, 10:01 AM
I was at work that morning filling in as a supervisor. A call came in from one of our rural carriers who was off work that day. She said "2 747s have flown into the World Trade Center." She was bad to get details wrong so I didn't think passenger planes, but maybe small planes or something. I went to the radio (no TV in the building),turned it on, but only heard music. I told several people there what she said. They kinda looked at me the same way I felt, not sure what to make of it. Then the radio cut in to a national feed of a reporter in New York. I needed to work but was kinda frozen in the moment. One of the clerks said Tower 1 had collapsed, another plane had flown into the Pentagon, and several planes were missing. I had to ride with a carrier that day so I couldn't see or hear what was going on. Got back in and every gas station in town was covered over. Got home and stayed glued to the TV the rest of the night.

I'll be glad when this day is over. I didn't know anybody hurt or killed that day or even know someone who knew someone, but the whole thing is hard to watch. :frown:

09-11-2011, 10:40 AM
I'll be glad when this day is over. I didn't know anybody hurt or killed that day or even know someone who knew someone, but the whole thing is hard to watch. :frown: We must never forget the vile nature of all terrorism and the people who support it politically AND financially. This is not just what affects us here in the USA, but in other countries that have had to put up with it for much longer and are still astounded at where these scum get their support from.

09-11-2011, 11:55 AM
My wife was a flight attendant for U S Air on 9/11, but not flying that day, having just completed a 4 day trip the day before. Don't know if I could have stood it if she had been gone. I had the experience earlier when U S Air had a 737 go into the drink in New York, and she was flying into New York at nearly the same time.

She had a friend who was an FA on the United flight and was married to a U S Air capt. that my wife flew with for many years.

We knew right away that life would never be the same.

09-11-2011, 07:00 PM
Like Nial, I was going flying too. We were all at the hangar with some work to do and I was checking out the weather on the 'net. My homepage at the time was some news site that said a "small airplane" hit a building in NYC. I groaned and told everyone "great - some idiot flew into a building". A few minutes later we got wind of what was happening from someone a few hangars away, I called home in time to hear ("live") about the 2nd building.

What was actually happening was pretty obvious to all of us, then Howard Stern was saying "we're under attack". We closed up, I topped off the car and grabbed a wad of cash from the ATM and went home to "enjoy" a short vacation while we were grounded.